About redundancy pay
You have the right to a statutory redundancy payment if you are an employee who has worked continuously for your employer for at least two years and you are being made redundant.
Statutory redundancy pay is also due when a fixed-term contract of two years or more expires and is not renewed because of redundancy.
You do not have to claim statutory redundancy pay from your employer, they should automatically pay it to you.
A redundancy payment isn't due to you if work picks up and your employer offers to keep you on, or offers you suitable alternative work which you refuse without good reason. If you leave your job for a new one before the end of your notice period, your payment might also be affected.
Temporary lay off
Redundancy pay can be claimed from your employer if you have been temporarily laid off for more than four weeks in a row, or six weeks in a 13-week period.
You must make your claim in writing to your employer who may refuse to pay if they believe normal working is likely to resume within four weeks.
As well as a redundancy payment, your employer should give you proper notice of termination of employment (or pay in lieu of notice). Details of the notice period will be in your contract.
Contractual redundancy pay
You should check your employment contract for how much redundancy pay you are entitled to. Your employer may offer a more generous package than the statutory minimum as part of your employment benefits.
Your employer cannot offer you less than the statutory minimum through your employment contract.
Statutory redundancy pay
Statutory redundancy pay is based on a calculation which uses your age and length of service. The redundancy calculator can tell you how much statutory redundancy pay you might be entitled to.
The total amount you should be paid for redundancy will be based on:
- how long you have been continuously employed
- your age
- your weekly pay, up to a certain limit (current maximum £500)
You will get:
- 0.5 week's pay for each full year of service where your age was under 22
- one week's pay for each full year of service where your age was 22 or above, but under 41
- 1.5 week's pay for each full year of service where your age was 41 or above
The maximum number of years that can be taken into account is 20 years. You can't be given statutory redundancy pay for more than 20 years' employment.
If you are 45, your weekly pay is £500 per week and you have completed 15 years full service, you will receive £8,500 statutory redundancy pay.
1.5 week's x 4 years service when you were 41 or above = 6 weeks
1 week x 11 years service when you were under 41 = 11 weeks
6 weeks + 11 weeks = 17 weeks x £500 (max weekly wage) = £8,500
Relevant end date for your years of service
The number of weeks' redundancy pay you should receive is calculated up until a set 'relevant date'. It's important to know when this date is so you can work out how many years service you have.
In most instances, this is the date when your employment ends (the last day of your notice period). In some situations this will be different:
- if your employer gave you a statutory notice period up until a set date, and then changed your notice period to finish earlier - the relevant date will be the original end date
- if you’re on a trial period for another position within the company and your employer lets you go because the work is not suitable - the relevant date is when your original contract ended before the trial period with the new position
- if you don’t have a statutory notice period (for example because of a payment in lieu arrangement) - the relevant date is when your employment contract would have ended
Redundancy pay under £30,000 is not taxable. More information on whether elements of the payment, such as pay in lieu of notice, is taxable is available from HM Revenue and Customs. Pay in lieu of notice is money paid to you by your employer as an alternative to being given your full notice.
If your employer can't pay
If they can't pay because they're insolvent, you might be able to get the money from the government.
Where to get help
If you've been made redundant, your employer will normally pay you either on the last day of your notice period, shortly afterwards, or on your next pay day. Your employer should give you a written statement showing how any payment has been worked out.
If you have doubts about the way your employer has calculated your statutory redundancy pay you can call the Redundancy Payments Freephone Helpline on 080 0585 811.
If your employer does not give you statutory redundancy pay when you are entitled to it, you should write to them asking for payment. If you have an employee representative, such as a trade union official, they may be able to help.
- How to resolve a problem at work
- Introduction to trade unions
- Labour Relations Agency
- Citizens Advice Northern Ireland
If your employer still refuses to pay you or can’t make the payment you can make an appeal to an Industrial Tribunal. You need to make a claim to the tribunal within six months, or you may lose the right to a payment.